The Woodlot Association of Manitoba (WAM) is the voice of Manitoba’s woodlot owners and family foresters.
WAM promotes “wisdom in the woods” for its members and for the public through
- advocacy, and
WAM is a member of the Canadian Federation of Woodlot Owners (CFWO), which advocates on behalf of woodlot owners across Canada, representing their interests at both the federal and provincial levels. WAM director and past president Bob Austman was re-elected first vice-president of CFWO in 2016.
CFWO is a member of the International Family Forest Alliance (IFFA), based in Belgium. IFFA is the global voice of family forestry, and represents 25-million private forest owners around the world. Canada’s Peter de Marsh, CFWO president, has served as chair of IFFA since elected in 2011.
WAM sits on the board of the Manitoba Model Forest (MBMF), which is based in Pine Falls, Manitoba. MBMF general manager Brian Kotak is also the general manager of the Canadian Model Forest Network. WAM’s Bob Austman is a director of CMFN.
WAM publishes The Manitoba Woodlot, a bi-monthly newsletter on issues of interest to owners of wooded lands. WAM aims to provide woodlot owners with up-to-date information, whether is it about cutting saw logs, selling firewood, growing biomass, tapping trees, foraging for wild foods, preserving forest land for its natural beauty, or experimenting with a multitude of non-timber forest products.
- WAM’s mandate is to promote and educate its members and the public in supporting sustainable woodlot development, assist members in finding ways to increase their income and profitability within the woodlot sector, educate members via field days and workshops on how to manage logging, sawmilling and other woodlot management methods effectively and safely, promote the development and use of renewable local woodlot products in place of non-renewable and imported products, and develop resources in woodlot management.
- WAM works collaboratively, where possible, with a wide range of provincial organizations that also support improved woodlot management, sustainable energy sources, have an appreciation of the social and economic value of preserving and enhancing forested land, give attention to climate-change issues, and promote the development of non-timber forest products.
- WAM is funded by membership fees, and receives an annual grant from the Manitoba Forestry Association to assist with the publication of The Manitoba Woodlot, WAM’s bimonthly newsletter. The MFA also provides administrative support for WAM as required.
- WAM is managed by a volunteer Board of Directors, which meets monthly. The WAM Annual General Meeting and board elections are held each year before the end of June, and are open to all WAM members in good standing.